Aboriginal Art from the Luczo Family Collection
19 October 2016


(1925 – 1995)

synthetic polymer paint and natural earth pigments on linen

197.5 x 137.0 cm

signed verso: David Dowzs [sic] / jorijonu
bears inscription verso: size, cat. 010/88

$15,000 – 20,000
Sold for $14,640 (inc. BP) in Auction 45 - 19 October 2016, Melbourne

Commissioned by Duncan Kentish in 1988
Bonython Meadmore Gallery, Sydney (label attached verso)
Holmes à Court Collection, Heytesbury, Western Australia (label attached verso cat. 2548)
Private collection
Sotheby's, Sydney, 25 November 2007, lot 77
The Luczo Family Collection, USA


Jarinyanu David Downs, Bonython Meadmore Gallery, Sydney, 18 August – 13 September 1988, cat. 22 (illus. in exhibition catalogue and front cover)

Catalogue text

The following excerpt is quoted from Kentish, D., Jarinyanu David Downs, exhibition catalogue, Bonython Meadmore Gallery, Sydney, 1988

The original accompanying certificate of authenticity stated in part: 'Kurtal is a Storm Being from the Ngarangarni – the Walmajarri word for the Dreaming. [...] When Kurtal entered Jarinyanu's country he was nearing the end of his journey. [...] Before a gathering of people from this area, Kurtal danced his final dance, metamorphosed into a snake, and sank into the earth where he remains today in a permanent rockhole spring. This spring supplied a reliable supply of water in all seasons, but in addition the old man would perform rituals at this site during the hot weather season to make Kurtal bring rain. [...] He is held to be responsible for and present within those particularly dramatic storms that usher in the break of the rainy season. [...][Dance of Kurtal, 1988] reveals Kurtal generating storms, with his arms and head enveloped in a cloud streaked with lightning and dust. A vertical snake motif suggests Kurtal's face is simultaneously the head of a snake, prefiguring his approaching metamorphosis. A band of cloud at his waist divides earth from sky. The lower section shows a grouping of women, girls and young boys. The women wear a vertical-striped body paint while the boys are painted with a snake motif.'